En EspaƱol

California Motor Vehicle Code 21718

When Drivers Can Stop on the Freeway

It is illegal and dangerous to stop or park a vehicle on the freeway, but occasionally it has to be done. There are a few instances where stopping, parking, or leaving a vehicle on a fully accessible freeway is a reasonable decision to make.

Parking a vehicle on the freeway to avoid injury or damage to persons or property is the first example. As a driver, acting to prevent dangerous situations that will harm other people or peoples' property is hugely important. Everyone must strive for the safest possible driving situation.

If a driver is required by law, he must pull over. This can occur in obedience with a peace officer or official traffic control device.

Those who are employed by public agencies to maintain the freeway or work in construction of the freeway are allowed to park on freeway space while engaged in the performance of these official duties.

If a driver's vehicle becomes severely disabled on the road, he may need to stop. This is acceptable so long as another vehicle has been summoned to assist the disabled vehicle. Leaving a disabled vehicle on the freeway for a long period of time is illegal, and towing of said vehicle must be prompt to avoid the risk of collision created by leaving a stationary object in a high speed roadway.

On the freeway, if any space is provided for stopping, standing, or parking, then it is permissible. This is applicable in the case of buses which are allowed to stop when sidewalks and shoulders with sufficient width are located on the side of the roadway. However, there has to be enough space for the bus to pullover without interfering with the normal movement of traffic.

If an emergency has occurred on the freeway, a driver may pullover and stop to make the necessary report to a peace officer by emergency telephone or other device. This will help notify officers to aid the scene if those involved in the accident are unable to call for help themselves.

Occasionally other drivers will have to stop on the freeway as an impeding object or vehicle is towed. The tow truck must operate under an agreement with the Department of the California Highway Patrol, and all other vehicle will wait until the road is clear and safe to proceed. Failing to stop at times like this is considered a violation of safe operation of a motor vehicle upon the highway.

Common sense is the best thing to employ when unforeseen circumstances occur while driving on the freeway. Drivers should consider the safest way to deal with situations that make require stopping on a freeway.

Was This Page Helpful? Yes | No

See All Ratings And Awards

The BISNAR | CHASE Difference

  • “I was in a serious auto accident when I was in law school. I had to hire a personal injury attorney and had a really bad experience.”

    John Bisnar

    on what made him want to become a personal injury attorney

  • “I went to law school knowing I wanted to be a personal injury attorney. I wanted my life’s work to have a positive impact on other people’s lives.”

    Brian Chase

    on what made him want to become a personal injury attorney

  • “Whatever the philosphy of the management is, is going to be carried through by the employees and it’s going to reflect on the experience the clients have.”

    John Bisnar

    on his philosophy on running a law firm

  • “Everybody either drives in a car or rides in a car, so when I do the auto defect cases I really feel like I’m making the world safer by making vehicles safer.”

    Brian Chase

    on why he focuses on auto defect cases

  • “The first thing we want to do with our clients is to relieve the stress. Make them feel comfortable. Treat them as an honored guest.”

    John Bisnar

    on how he would define superior client representation

  • “Corporate greed is a reality in our world and I see it time and time again. Especially, with the auto defect cases we focus on.”

    Brian Chase

    on corporate greed and how it affects the consumer

  • “You are dealing with people who are seriously injured or have lost a family member...Compassion is understanding someone else’s situation.”

    John Bisnar

    on the role compassion plays in his profession

Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys
1301 Dove St #120
Newport Beach, CA 92660

local: (949) 203-3814
Get Directions

California Personal Injury Blog

Hyundai Recalls Elantra Cars For Potential Power Steering Failure

Hyundai is recalling nearly 205,000 of its Elantra cars because the power steering could suddenly stop working, making the vehicle more difficult to turn. According to a report in The New York Times,

read article

Chrysler Recalls 467,000 SUVs For Possible Stalling

Fiat Chrysler has issued an auto defect recall for more than 467,000 Dodge and Jeep SUVs worldwide to fix a defective fuel pump relay said to be at the root of a potential stalling problem. According

read article

Wage And Hour Violation Lawyer

Earlier this month, the Fourth Appellate District reversed a trial court judgment, stating that a wage order authorizing health care workers’ waiver of meal breaks on shifts longer than 12 hours

read article


Copyright & Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The legal information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice, nor the formation of an attorney-client relationship. Any results set forth here were dependent on the facts of that case and the results will differ from case to case.

Bisnar Chase serves all of California. In addition, we represent clients in other states through our associations with local law firms. Through the local firm, we will be admitted to practice law in their state, pro hac vice, meaning "for this particular occasion." When in our client's interest, we employ the local law firm (at no additional cost to our client) to assist us with routine court appearances and discovery proceedings to more efficiently pursue our client's cause.

Copyright © 1999- Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys - All rights reserved.
Location: 1301 Dove St. #120, Newport Beach, CA 92660 - Tel: (949) 203-3814